|Fred Rogers photo by Robert Lerner|
In this article, I describe my recently renewed appreciation of Mister Rogers' Neighborhood. In particular, the artistic intentions and the marvelous music.
Raising kids in today's media reality
I wish for everyone in the world to know and embrace love, compassion, curiosity, creativity, mindfulness, emotional intelligence, and so on. Of course, it takes regular investment to maintain and strengthen such things in my own life. And as one person, I only have so much influence and only so much capacity to support others. I do what I can with my students. And as a father, I bring these concerns to raising my now two-year-old son.
An enormous threat to these values happens to dominate today's media: manipulative advertising. For perspectives, see my older post: I hate advertising, and check out the Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood. Putting ads themselves aside (ideally blocked by a good adblocker), our ad-driven economy creates a race-to-the-bottom toward whatever spectacles or addictive designs get the most attention. It brings us enormous quantities of unhealthy, annoying, hyper, and dumbed down works. In the worst cases, we get the deeply traumatizing perils of YouTube's "kids" videos…